Buford (Ga.) High cornerback Martin Mangram has several offers on his list. With his senior season winding down (highlights in the video above), his recruitment is becoming a greater focus. He already has one official visit set, to Syracuse the weekend of January 16th, and is looking to take at least one more. That would be to Illinois.
Mangram claims no favorites, says he does not have a list nor has he eliminated anyone at this point. That said, he admits two schools are recruiting him the hardest. Those two are the same schools he knows will receive officials, Illinois and Syracuse.
"I still don't really have a list," Mangram said. "I really like those two schools, but I don't have them in a list or anything."
The 5-foot-11 defensive back says he is in constant contact with the Fighting Illini, primarily with outside linebackers coach Al Seamonson and defensive coordinator/secondary coach Tim Banks.
"They just check in on my weekly," Mangram said. "(We) talk about planning an official after my season. They're very interested and they say I have a chance to play early."
One thing Illinois would seemingly have going against them is the coaching situation with Tim Beckman getting fired before the season began. But Mangram says it has not impacted his interest in the slightest.
"It doesn't effect it," he said. "Coach (Bill) Cubit has done a great job stepping into that situation."
The other school recruiting Mangram hard is Syracuse. The Orange have been involved with him since May and his uncle (Jeff Mangram) played safety at the school from 1985-88. Mangram remains in touch with Syracuse on a regular basis as well, primarily with defensive backs coach Fred Reed.
"He just tells me how they have one spot left for corner," he said. "And I'm their top guy and they don't want me to lose that spot."
Mangram visited Syracuse in June and left impressed. Since he has seen the campus before, what is he looking for during the official?
"Just really refresh my mind of the campus and to meet the rest of the coaches," Mangram said. "Because (for) my early visit, they weren't able to be there."
He added that he was impressed with the first four games of Syracuse's play this season, but thinks they've fallen back since then. Despite that, he believes in the direction of the program under head coach Scott Shafer and that coach Shafer will turn things around.
Though he has no set date to make a decision, Mangram said he is eyeing a commitment sometime in January, depending on his official visits. Mangram also holds offers from Iowa State, East Carolina and Army.